The government of Liberia has hailed the resumption of flights to Monrovia by Air France, an event which marks the end of a long hiatus since the airline halted its operations in the country.
President George Manneh Weah expressed the Liberian Government’s appreciation and delight Friday, when Air France Senior Executives for Africa paid him a courtesy call. The Liberian Leader said with his strong ties to France, bilateral relations between the two countries will only get better. “France has done a lot for me and with the commitment from Air France that it is here for the foreseeable future, says a lot of the goodness of the French People,” President Weah said.
For his part, Air France Senior Vice President Henri Hourcade praised the Liberian Government’s efforts and commitment in getting the Airline to resume its operations in the country. “It is because of the very strong commitment of Liberia this time around engendering the right conditions that we are back here to resume operations with a full complement,” Henri Hourcade asserted.
Earlier in the day, at a formal ceremony meant to commemorate the arrival of the maiden flight, the Liberian Minister of Finance and Development Planning, Samuel D. Tweah, said the recommencement of the airline’s operations in the country was a reflection of the confidence the airline has in Liberia’s economic future. He said despite the COVID-19 crisis, a lot has been achieved and that the business climate will continue to improve.
Also in attendance at that ceremony were Information Minister Ledgerhood J. Rennie, Deputy Transport Minister Sirleaf Tyler and the new French Ambassador Michael Roux, who extolled the ties between Liberia and France. Ambassador Roux said the French government trusts the prospects for the Liberian economy, despite COVID-19 and the toil it has taken on businesses.
It can be recalled that during a state visit to France in 2019, President George M. Weah made a case with French officials and the airline’s management for the resumption of their Monrovia route. Their operations in the country, which were halted in 2014, were initially scheduled to resume in April 2020 but delayed due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Air France will add to a growing list of international carriers the government has been courting as it improves on airport infrastructure while creating the conditions necessary to ensure the Monrovia route becomes a go-to destination.